A commenter wrote:

I’m interested in your choice of pronoun in the following: “Each website author or publisher has to find their own solution,” I prefer to bounce between “his” and “her,” but am always interested in hearing writers’ rationale for their choice. By the way, I see “their” more and more often in the NYTs –not sure if it’s an editorial drift or decision.

Tell the truth, I used to agonize far more about singular they than I do now, having been exposed to the infinite wisdom of Language Log (from whom I stole my headline). It isn't just the historical antecedents, it is also the fact that I am more comfortable now breaking the rules, especially ill-founded proscriptive rules. 1 I used to worry; recasting sentences to avoid "he or she," and occasionally using the feminine for effect, and I vividly recall Richard Dawkins doing the same. These days, I'm more concerned that a sentence reads as well as I can make it, although Language Log's archives on the subject provide a handy buttress when I need support.

  1. Don't, whatever you do, get me started on that bugbear of ill-educated English-speakers, the split infinitive. I'd like to soundly thrash them all.  

Two ways to respond: webmentions and comments


Webmentions allow conversations across the web, based on a web standard. They are a powerful building block for the decentralized social web.

“Ordinary” comments

These are not webmentions, but ordinary old-fashioned comments left by using the form below.

Reactions from around the web